Three countries have plans to launch rockets to Mars this month as the search for alien life on the dry planet turns around. The countries, China, the United States, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are all getting ready for historic Mars launches in July with the hopes of finding more about Earth‘s neighbor.
China’s new space force establishment will be launching an orbiter known as Tianwen-1, which translates to ‘the quest for heavenly truth,’ and will orbit the Red Planet to find out more about the dry and dusty world.
The orbiter will spend a year orbiting Mars, serving as a communication system for humanity’s eventual arrival with the launch date set between July 20th and July 25th. Besides the orbiter, China will also send a rover to explore the surface of Mars and collect soil samples.
China National Space Agency (CNSA) chief mission architect Zhang Rongqiao said: “Our goal is to explore and gather as much scientific data as possible.”
The UAE is also launching an orbiter known as The Hope, which will rotate around the Red Planet for two years, after a 200-day journey. As per The Hill, the country’s main goal is to flex its financial muscle and demonstrate it is capable enough in the space exploration industry, because the oil, which UAE has in abundance, loses its appeal.
NASA said: “The main instrument, the Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics & Chemicals (SHERLOC), will be mounted on the end of one of the Mars rover’s robotic arms.”
SHERLOC will generate a quarter-sized ultraviolet laser at the ground, with researchers then measuring the manner the light spreads in order to find out what type of minerals and chemical compounds it is made from.
NASA’s Luther Beegle said: “Life is clumpy. If we see organics clumping together on one part of a rock, it might be a sign that microbes thrived there in the past.”